beach trip | santa cruz + aptos / by Maci Britt

Alternate title: Scenes from the best Wednesday ever.

The only plans we had were to visit Natural Bridges State Beach, cook our lunch on the beach, get coffee at Verve, and hit up some bookstores. We played the rest by ear and had the best day ever. We left around 9am on Wednesday and didn’t return until nearly 1am on Thursday. This is what it looks like when 5 good friends head for the beach…

Our first stop was Natural Bridges. We parked on a neighborhood street, thus saving $10, and lugged our bags and ice chest down a sandy hill and up again to the grills and picnic tables. With five of us it was completely doable. (Plus, who wants to spend money on parking when you can spend it on books or coffee?)

While Daniel, Simon, and Collin grilled, Paige and I contributed some music. Then we ate, drank Virgil’s and Reed’s, and tried to keep the wind from blowing dirt in our faces. Afterwards, we decided the best course of action would be to take everything back to the car before exploring the beach.

The beach was thoroughly explored, but not thoroughly documented. I only snapped a few photos using Paigey’s phone, since I left mine in the car on purpose. We basically ran towards and away from waves, got our legs wet, and climbed on rocks.

Leaving the beach, we headed downtown. Verve, a random antique store, Bookshop, The Penny Ice Creamery, and Logos Books & Records were all on the agenda. At Verve, I drank a missile. At The Penny, I enjoyed a scoop of dark chocolate sorbet. At Logos, I scored two Dave Brubeck records for $5. Hooray!

Before heading out of Santa Cruz, we picked up Pizza My Heart to go. It was decided back at the car that we would drive to Aptos, eat pizza on the beach, and watch the sunset.

The sun ended up being mostly hidden by a marine layer, but the sky was still beautiful. It chilled off after the sun left so we huddled in the beach blankets, ate cookies, played a game on paper, and wrote two wonderful poems.

Favorite lines:

“Take a bite out of the moon, chew it, and swallow.”

“And with half wit and a filled stomach, the sun gleamed once more on Doppelgänger Prairie.”

At about 10pm, we headed home. Bringing the backpack guitar into the car with us was possibly the best decision of the day. Who needs a radio when you have five voices and one guitar?

It was fun, guys. Let’s do this again when we all get back from where we’re headed.